The National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE), a part of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), is a collaborative hub where industry organizations, government agencies, and academic institutions work together to address businesses’ most pressing cybersecurity challenges. Through this collaboration, the NCCoE develops modular, easily adaptable example cybersecurity solutions demonstrating how to apply standards and best practices by using commercially available technology. To learn more about the NCCoE, visit http://www.nccoe.nist.gov. To learn more about NIST, visit http://www.nist.gov. This document describes several security considerations as industry is preparing for a migration to the 5th generation (5G) mobile network. The NCCoE cybersecurity team will develop approaches and proposed solutions in collaboration with a Community of Interest, equipment vendors, and telecommunication providers.
Cellular networks will be transitioning from 4G to 5G, and 5G networks will provide increased cybersecurity protections. This project will identify several 5G use case scenarios and demonstrate for each one how to strengthen the 5G architecture components to mitigate identified risks and meet industry sectors’ compliance requirements. The project will demonstrate how commercial and open source products can leverage cybersecurity standards and recommended practices for each of the 5G use case scenarios, as well as showcase how 5G security features can be utilized. A phased approach will be employed to align with the development pace of 5G technology and availability of commercial 5G technology. This iterative approach will provide the flexibility to add to the project as the phases evolve to take advantage of newly introduced security capabilities. This project will result in a freely available NIST Cybersecurity Practice Guide.